The purpose of the project is to design policy to mitigate the cost of adjustment by farmers to climate change in China and Vietnam and thereby to increase their livelihood. The project will also
identify those farmers at risk from climate change by using farm level survey data to assess the forms and costs of response to climate change by different types of farmers
develop the capacity to model the consequences through market processes for prices and outputs and therefore incomes of climate change and farmer responses to climate change
use that modelling capability alongside an assessment framework to assess the effects of policy options and to identify and promote the adoption of priority policy responses to assist farmer adaptation and adjustment to climate change
The key output is therefore the analysis and adoption of policy options in response to climate change in order to raise farmer welfare.
The project builds on a first stage organised under an SRA in 2012, which included a first round of the collection of household survey data. Another set of data has now been collected in a second survey in both China and Vietnam. These data have been cleaned and significant papers have been written by both groups of researchers. There are important policy implications already evident including with respect to the importance of property rights, the impact of investment choices, water management and information systems.
Further analysis of the data and then modelling work will be undertaken in the final year of the project.
Communication systems with policy makers have been established, including advisory boards in both economics.
There are plans in place for reporting in academic networks including international conferences, planning and research meetings in Singapore and Guangzhou have been held and others are planned.
This project is designed to examine the impact of climate change and to study how households adapt. The focus is rice farmers in Vietnam and China but the same frameworks for data collection and analysis are applied in both economies, facilitating the scope for comparative studies. The project also analyses how the combination of climate changes and farmer adaptations feed into markets though shifts in supply. The first round effect will be changes in the prices, and then quantities of outputs might further change as farmers respond to those price changes. We also examine the interactions between events in China and Vietnam with those in world markets.
Our goal is to derive implications for policy that lead to more efficient adaptation strategies and which deal with the challenges facing households most at risk from climate change.
The project has made good progress in the collection of the relevant data at household level in both economies. Indeed, the data collection in Vietnam has been more extensive than originally planned. These data continue to be subjected to extensive analysis to identify both impacts of climate change and the factors which drive farmer decision making on how to respond. Some policy implications have already been derived, with more to come in the final 6 months of the project. The latter stages also involve more focus on modelling the impacts of climate change in markets and the feedbacks from markets to farmers.
Key points to date in the project include the confirmation that
- Climate change has significant effects on yields of crops (both average yields and their variation) through changes in temperature and precipitation, but the impacts vary significantly by crop
- The quality of local infrastructure has an important impact on the ease with which farmers can adapt to climate change, especially in water systems where the research supports a focus on new small scale rather than large scale projects.
- Land rights are important - those with longer tenure are more likely to adapt so that policy to secure land rights remains a priority.
- The adoption of new farm management practices is also an important option and their use varies systematically with a number of key characteristics of farmers, including their land tenure arrangements.
We have also examined the nature of farmer perceptions of climate change (and whether they are correct) and how those perceptions drive their choices of adaptation. This work has been used to make the case for better early warning systems.
The results to date have been discussed with networks of stakeholders and policy makers in both China and Vietnam, including at the regional level. A feature of the project has been the building of capacity in all the research teams. Many papers have already been written and a number have been submitted to academic journals for publication.